Inspired Style from my 5 year-old

My daughter Annabel is a born fashionista.  I know this because I see it in the choices she makes every day when dressing herself (which she has done since she could walk). 

Chloè and Annabel in the vintage fabric summer dresses I made for them.

The first time I realised she cared about how she presented herself was when she was just 18 months old.  It was summer, and I had filled the paddling pool with water so that she and her sister Chloè could cool off.  Chloè was already splashing about in her pink bikini, not a care in the world.  But Annabel, well I saw her come out on to the back steps in her swimmers when she stopped suddenly, did an about-face and rushed off back inside the house only to return a moment later with a string of beads around her neck.  Now she was ready to splash about!  

Chloè and Annabel at the local agricultural show (A is wearing one of my hats).

The first time it became clear to me that I had no real say in what Annabel wanted to wear was when we had a battle of wills over a dress.  It was the middle of winter and try as I might, all she ever wanted to wear was a dress.  In the end I gave up because I didn’t want to fight with her, especially over clothes.  It just seemed a pointless thing to do.  I now figure as long as I can get her to rug up when it’s cold and remember to put her knickers on before she leaves the house, then I believe my job is done!

Annabel wearing the very beads she donned before being ‘ready’ for the paddling pool.  Can you believe they haven’t been lost?  I bought these beads for Chloè when I was pregnant with Annabel, and considering that sometimes things I buy for the girls can be lost within a heartbeat, it still amazes me that these beads keep turning up!

This morning Annabel surprised me with a combination that truly only a child can get a way with, but more than that, it inspired a spark of creativity in me too.  She had grey houndstooth leggings on underneath a plaid pinafore which she had teamed with a striped long-sleeve tee.  She wore this with pink espadrilles and her yellow Dorothy the Dinosaur handbag.  I wish I had a photograph of her to share with you, but even though it sounds like a crazy mix, it worked for her!  Her grandfather arrived later to collect her for a day at Nona and Poppa’s and he commented that her skill with dressing was not unlike her Grandfather – non-conformist, individual, a true expression of her individuality.

 Annabel has a tendency to mix things up a bit… here she is trying out her Dora beach towel worn with Mummy’s favourite Zara tee ensemble.  

Modeling the ‘Couture’ hat she had made at the Stephen Jones exhibition.

And so I took off to work today in a dark khaki dress with purple stockings and a sunflower yellow scarf which I wore with my chocolate brown wool Nuala runners.  This unusual combination made me feel happy, free and relaxed.

I wonder what combination Annabel will inspire in me tomorrow?


This weekend we celebrate Annabel’s 5th birthday with a posse of her friends from Kindy and other little girls at a local park.  Bring on the cupcakes, fairy bread and balloon animals – I can’t wait!

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One thought on “Inspired Style from my 5 year-old

  1. Hello Heidi!

    Kids can be so awesome! I look forward to the day I'll have my own… your girls are adorable! Really, really pretty.
    I hope to become an au pair this year and I can just imagine the fun I'll have playing with the kids that I'll be taking care of… I hope at least one of them is a girl so I can play dress up with her!
    Oh, and the new photo of Vanessa Paradis is beautiful!


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